Don’t call it a comeback or a renaissance or the rise of the female comic. Funny women have been around for years. Radner, Tomlin, Notaro, DeGeneres, the list goes on. But the number of newcomers dominating the genre and repping for the “fairer “sex has proven that not only have women always had a place at the mic stand, they’re the ones who are owning it.
From bossy pants Fey to the wackiness of Wiig and the perpetually bare-breasted (not without purpose) Handler, it’s a great time for the girls of comedy. But one comedienne in particular seems to be monopolizing my inbox, Twitter feed, and all other incessant streams of information.
Amy Schumer. Comedy Central darling, subject of dozens of viral videos and the star of this summer’s box office hit Trainwreck seems to be everyone’s favourite funny girl. But why do we love her? Why is everyone so enchanted by a woman who raps of fudge machines and fixates on her many failed first dates?
I’ll tell you why, because Schumer is f*cking hilarious. Sure, the subject matter of much of her stage show has been done before. The many woes and misadventures of the single girl, navigating her way through the daunting world of sex and dating. It’s her style of what I can only describe as tangent-based storytelling that sets her apart. Where she takes you down a spiral of self-deprecating observations, leaving you either teary-eyed in fits of belly laughs or completely speechless like this interview on The Ellen DeGeneres Show. Since when does anyone leave DeGeneres at a loss for words?
Schumer is completely unapologetic about who she is and reminds us not to take ourselves so seriously. At a time where the interwebs have enabled the most narcissistic era in the evolution of human beings (I’m not over dramatizing here and you know it), it’s so refreshing to watch her cleverly mock this behaviour in a kidding-not-kidding kind of way.
Let’s take the recent rise of the super plump and buoyant booty, for example. Celebrating the female form in all its curves and splendour is one thing. But the greased up, balance-a-serving-tray-sized booty phenomenon is getting so redundant. Leave it to Schumer to pointedly remind us that this is where my poo comes out.
Hollywood is not something Schumer finds herself drawn to, if this acceptance speechduring Glamour’s Women of the Year awards is any indication. She doesn’t seem seduced by fame and success, despite her ever-growing audience, Emmy noms (seven in total) and having a hit film under her belt.
What sets Schumer apart, though, from so many of her talented and comical counterparts is her fearless approach to shining a light on sensitive topics. Many of the sketches that appear on her Comedy Central series Inside Amy Schumer challenge said topics with not-so-subtle satire. Like “Football Night Lights” where Schumer slams rape culture or “Babies & Bustiers”, which makes a mockery of the tragic world of child beauty pageants. She takes what we’re all thinking and amplifies it with character-driven comedy, made even better with the casting of some of her famous friends.
Last week, Schumer spoke out about gun control after a fatal shooting occurred during a screening of her film in Louisiana, further utilizing her platform to shed light on serious issues. I love her for the comedy, but I admire her for the courage to lace meaningful messages into everything she does.
Bottom line, Schumer is the girlfriend everyone wishes they had. She’s the life of the party, but she’s never going to sleep with your boyfriend. She’ll do just about anything for a laugh, at the expense of her own dignity. But more than anything she reminds us all to have a giggle and get over ourselves.
“I get labeled a sex comic. But if a guy got up onstage and pulled his dick out, everybody would say, ‘He’s a thinker,'” she said earlier this year.
For Amy Schumer’s stand-up tour dates and tickets, visit amyschumer.com.
Originally published in the Huffington Post.